Local favourite, Brett Rumford tops the leaderboard on 17-under the card after he fired an incredible 4-under 68 today. He leads by five shots but that means little under the innovative Super 6 format.
"The format is the format, someone had to lead this qualifier, simple as that," Rumford said.
"I would have been happy tied for the lead or anywhere around it would have been fine in that top 8 but as it turned out, momentum start to swing my way.
"My main focus now is obviously tomorrow, find out who I'm paired with and, yeah, just go out all guns blazing."
Rumford will be seeded straight through to the second round as will the other players who finished in the top-8; Jason Scrivener (AUS), Austin Connelly (CAN), Louis Oosthuizen (RSA), Adam Blyth (AUS), Lucas Herbert (AUS), Steven Jeffress (AUS), and Jake Higginbottom (AUS).Six players finished tied 8th but Hibbonbottom secured the coveted seeded position thanks to shooting the best third round; 6-under 66.
“I played solid, no bogeys out there today so that's always a good thing. I holed some nice putts,” said Higgibottom. “It was good to play with Scrivy (Jason Scrivener) as well. I guess we fed off each other and both ended up shooting 6‑under today so it was good.”
There were players making birdies all over the course as they aimed to secure their spot in the top-24.While there were plenty of fist pumps as players earned their place in the match play round, with crowds cheering like it were for the championship title, there were also moments of heartbreak.
Matthew Millar proved that it is a game of centimetres as he missed his birdie putt on 18 to book his place straight through to Sunday.
New Zealander Ryan Fox was at points in the round inside the top-8 but with two bogeys in his closing three holes he finished in a tie for 20th alongside Millar, Duncan Stewart (SCO), Jeev Milkha Singh (IND), Sam Brazel (AUS), Phachara Khongwatmai (THA), Jordan Smith (ENG) and Sebastian Heisele (GER).
As fans crowded around the 18th green the eight players teed off in a sudden death playoff on the 18th hole for the final five places in the top-24.
With pars on the first trip down 18; Millar, Singh, Brazel and Stewart all had the job done leaving the final three fighting for one spot.
Heisele was the first to drop out as he bogyed the 18th in the second playoff hole while Fox and Khongwatmai made par and headed back to the tee for a third time.Showing great strength under pressure the 17 year old Thai player and youngest in the field made par while Fox made bogey to secure the final position in Sunday’s action.
"For me no pressure to play golf, yeah, I just play and fun to play golf here." Khongwatmai said.
While the first round of match play will tee off at 7:15am tomorrow at Lake Karrinyup Country Club the pairings will not be known until later tonight when a live draw is conducted at the Pan Pacific Perth.
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